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Thomas & Friends: Luke

toy train

The first book of the popular Thomas the Tank Engine stories appeared in Great Britain in the late 1940s. The forty books of the series feature Thomas and his train and vehicle friends who worked the railway system presided over by Sir Topham Hatt, The Fat Controller, a firm but fair leader. Thomas was introduced as a "tank engine who lives at a big station on the Island of Sodor. He's a cheeky, little engine with six small wheels, a short stumpy funnel, a short stumpy boiler and a short stumpy dome." In the early stories, he is a station pilot, and he works to shunt coaches and trucks for bigger engines. Thomas longs for a more important job-to run on his own branch line (he eventually does). In each story, Thomas, other engines like Edward, Gordon, Percy, and Toby, his two coaches, Annie and Clarabel, and others work cooperatively to solve problems and resolve conflicts. Each tale conveys a lesson or moral in a straightforward narration that kids grasp and enjoy. In 1984, British television introduced an animated series of Thomas the Tank Engine and His Friends. The series appeared in the United States in 1989 as Shining Times Station on PBS. Books, television, feature movies, and licensed toys and products of Thomas and his many friends have made the little engine enormously popular for several decades. Thomas has been produced in twenty-five languages and has appeared in more than 140 countries.

  • Manufacturer: Fisher-Price
  • Material: plastic | printed cardboard | metal
  • Origin: China
  • Object ID: 112.6047
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